Manufacturing details of the Evans repeating rifles Lever Action|
by Scott Crawford - July 26, 2021
- A total of almost 15,000 Evans repeating rifles were produced between 1873 and 1879. The Evans Repeating Rifle Company went bankrupt in December 1879, a victim of the post war arms glut and keen competition.
- Available from: 1868 to 1871 (Transition Model), 1873 to 1879 (Old Model)
- Cartridges: .44 Evans short, .44 New Model
- Notes: The first model of the rifle, commonly called the old model, was in production from 1873 to 1876. This model differs from later models mainly in that it has no lower buttstock, only an upper one. This means that the magazine tube is exposed along the bottom of the stock. In addition, the ejection port has no dust cover. Approximately 500 old models were produced. The first 200 of these have no cocking lever retaining stud on the underside of the magazine tube. Old models made after the first 200 have a stud or locking nut to hold the cocking lever in place.
When Warren Evans designed his rifle he also had to design his own cartridge. What he came up with is now known as the .44 Evans short. This is noted in the factory catalogs as being a 1” shell. The original cartridges were loaded with 33 grains of black powder and a 220 grain lead bullet. This gave a velocity of about 850 fps. The more common new model Evans rifle used the 1.5” case. This was known as the “.44 New Model” cartridge. The original cartridges were loaded with 40 to 43 grains of black powder and lead bullets ranging from 275 to 300 grains. With a 280 grain bullet velocity was about 1200 fps. Both cartridges were loaded by Winchester up to the early 1920s. By early 1876, Evans modified the original and began producing the so-called Transition model. Unlike the old model, the transition model had a walnut lower buttstock, as well as a redesigned buttplate. These changes improved the balance of the rifle, as well as protecting it from damage.
The new cartridge together with numerous improvements in the design were combined to make the new model Evans repeating rifle. By the summer of 1877 the new model was perfected and put into production.
||.44 Evans short, .44 New Model
||26 to 28 Rounds
||22", 26", 28" & 30"
||Round/Half-Round/Octagon or Octagon
||Scope Mount Type
|Rate of Twist
||33.25" to 42.75"
||Length of Pull
||7.00 to 8.75 lbs
||Walnut stock, checkering and engraving available on special order
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